No, this is not a post about conservation. It is a post about a new prize for one of the best books ever written. And that book is, of course, To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee.
John Grisham, the best-selling author, is the inaugural winner for the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction for his work in The Confession. The new literary award will be given annually to published fiction that "best exemplifies the positive role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change."
Grisham's 2010 novel, the story of the wrong man awaiting execution in the rape and murder of a high school cheerleader, is newly out in paperback and is No. 9 on USA TODAY's Best-Selling Books list.
The award, named after the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, who approved the award, marks the 50th anniversary of the classic book's publication and is co-sponsored by The University of Alabama School of Law (where Lee attended) and the ABA Journal, the American Bar Association's flagship magazine.
The Confession, selected by a committee including authors David Baldacci and Linda Fairstein, documents an attorney's efforts to save his innocent client from execution.
Grisham will be honored on Sept. 22 at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. His new novel, The Litigators (Doubleday), will be published on Oct. 25.
As a side note, but an important one for this blob, Grisham is now writing a new series for children, centered on a precocious amateur lawyer. The first in the series, which will be published in May 2012 by Penguin Young Readers Group, is called “Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer” and features a 13-year-old character, the son of two attorneys in a small Southern town.